Ryan Benjamin

Class Year: 
2009
Hometown: 
New Haven, CT
Education: 
BA in Urban Studies and Hispanic Studies, 2009
M.Ed, Education Policy, American University, 2011
What brought you to Urban Studies?: 

I originally wanted to major in Urban Studies because I thought it would be similar to Sim City -- which I was pretty good at -- but, of course, that turned out to be far from the reality. I stayed on the city planning track for a while, thinking I would submatriculate, until I took some amazing education-related classes and realized that was the path I wanted to pursue.

Career/Career Ambitions: 

I am currently the Math Resource Coordinator a charter school in DC. I taught math and was the
department chair at a DC traditional public high school for three years. In my current role, I teach,
coach other teachers, and help the school to use data effectively. I aspire to be a principal and
superintendent.

Thesis Topic: 
I wrote about three young African-American men at West Philly High School and their motivation to do well in school.
Fieldwork Placement: 
I worked at Math Foundations, a small math-related educational consultant.
Memorable experiences as a major: 

I was the Chair of the UAB for three years, and we had a lot of fun going to New York each year.
The most memorable trip was when we went 600 feet below the surface to explore New York's
unfinished third water tunnel.

Courses: 
Homelessness and the Urban Crisis
A Real-World Project to help create a new West Philadelphia High School
The City (focus on mayoral election of 2007)
Awards: 
Contribution to the Urban Studies Program (2009)